Subject: Help!!
From: Steve Owens <uso01 -at- EAGLE -dot- UNIDATA -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 30 Mar 1994 14:50:32 +0700


I'm CC'ing this reply to the entire list because this advice
may come in handy for others when they encounter mailer errors.

Doug (engstromdd -at- PHIBRED -dot- COM) asks about the mailer error
message he received...

> From: GW1::"MAILER-DAEMON -at- qmgate" 30-MAR-1994 11:11:16.41
> To: engstromdd -at- phibred
> CC:
> Subj: Returned Mail

This is fairly standard mail header stuff. The part you
(as a human non-techie) can get the most out of generally follows
immediately after:

> -------------- Special condition follows --------------
> qmgate :unknown QM user;
> -------------- Message follows --------------

Which means that your message got as far as qmgate, where the
qmgate mailer daemon looked around for qmgate.gatemc and couldn't
find it. This particular message is odd, actually; usually the
message is more specific, in the vein of "can't find user XYZZY"
where XYZZY is the userid you sent the mail to.

> Received: by with SMTP;30 Mar 1994 09:12:54 -0800
> Received: from PDS.DECnet MAIL11D_V3 by (5.57/Ultrix3.0-C)
> id AA10180; Wed, 30 Mar 94 11:13:54 -0600

This is generic mailer stuff, but it can be helpful - you can look
through the addresses to see how far it got and hence where the problem
occurred, if the error message wasn't clear enough.

As to what you can do to resolve the problem... the most
common response is to send e-mail to postmaster -at- sitename, where
sitename is the problem site. If the mail never got outside your
system, then you want to mail to your local postmaster - or maybe to a
system administrator if you know one personally. Postmaster is an
address that generally exists at every site, for just this sort of
thing. One of the system administrators at the site should regularly
check it and respond.

If that still gets you nowhere, you can look for clues in your
old e-mail, and do other detective work. If you can't find anything,
you COULD post to a public list and ask the person to contact you, but
that burns up lotsa CPU, space, bandwidth, and reading time as
everybody else reads it - if the list administrator is a friendly
sort, you might be much better off contacting the list administrator
for advice. Obviously HE (or she) manages to get mail to the person!

Posting publically is a last resort. It's no huge crime, but
there are alternatives you can pursue before you get to that point.

Steven J. Owens
uso01 -at- unidata -dot- com

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